When we were in Ireland we visited a couple of film locations one was for The Quiet Man. It was where the bar fight was filmed "Cohans Bar" in Cong. While it is no longer a bar/pub, it is a gift shop and still much the same. We met and talked to the owner, well worth the stop.
Also, we visited the bar/pub (still operating) where "Moby Dick" was filmed and had a couple of pints. We met the owner and he gave us a nice autographed souvenir. Also, well worth the stop. We used "Terry Flynn Tours" to escort us around, on our itinerary. There are others too, see below but, we were very satisfied with Terry Flynn and have used them twice and will be using them again in June 2010. The next time we go we want to include other film locations too.
We used terryflynntours.com, they have US offices too. For comparison on hotel packages, B & B, other self drive & escorted tour possibilities, please operators see discoverireland.com.
I don't suppose Aghagower would be on many tourists' places to visit in County mayo, but I add it as tip for one very special reason. In this peaceful village is a nice small park with a babbling brook that runs nearby the ruins of an old church. If you go and stand in the nave of this church, you will be standing in the place where I proposed to my wife.
We were traveling from Clare, on the way to Westport to meet friends, and I was searching all along the way for the perfect place. It was getting later in the day and by chance I took a side road and came into the Aghagower as the sun was beaming though the old stone windows of the church. It was quiet, except for the sound of birds singing and the brook babbling.
The Iveagh Gardens is a beautiful and peaceful corner of downtown Dublin, seldomly found by tourists. The park, which used to be the private property of the Guinness family, is completely enclosed, with entrances that are somewhat hard to find (and probably regularly mistaken for being entrances to the nearby St Stephen's Green).
The gardens were designed by Ninian Niven in 1865 and are in the process of being continually restored. The park has several statues, both complete ones and fragments, a waterfall surrounded by tree ferns, an archery range, a restored Victorian rosarium and a maze.
The gardens are open from 8 am (10 pm Sundays / Bank Holidays) to 6 pm or dusk. There is no entrance fee, no cafés or anything to distract one from just simply relaxing.
Directions: Main entrance is from Clonmel Street (short street off Harcourt Street). There is also a tiny and easily overlooked entrance on Hatch Street.
One of the best experiences in my life is a trip with Dave with Wolfhound Tours. I am going on my second tour with him next month. He takes small groups and if you really want to know about Ireland and the culture as well as see some amazing places, sign up now! The website is http://www.wolfhoundtours.com/
I did the South West Tour and it rocks!
In Rathdrum is located the Avondale House, the birthplace and home of Charles Stewart Parnell one of the greatest political leaders of Irish history and surrounding the mansion there is a magnificent forestry park of over 500 acres of tree trail ranging in duration from one to five hours.
Inside the beautiful Georgian House many original pieces of furniture where contained. Visitors are introduced to this wonderful historical house by a specially commissioned audio visual presentation. All this is worth seeing. But for me it is the wildlife that makes this location worth a trip. This place is great for a family trip as suitable for both children and adults. A wonderfull place for a picnic, outdoor activities, hiking and bikeriding. Most routes are accesible with a pram (so wheelchair as well).
Other facilities include a restaurant, book shop, picnic areas, children’s play area, two orienteering courses and large car/coach park (pretty expensive). Visiting the park is free, you have to pay to get in the House and to park (but you can park at the top of Rathdrum and walk (about a 15-20 minute walk). I recommend this as a great family location.
If you arrive by train: Walk up the main rd,pass Garda station on the lft and Parnell park on the right. Turn left at crossings (Avon motors). Avondale House is straight, about a 15-20 min walk.
Rathdrum is situated in the heart of Wicklow which makes it a perfect place to stay and explore the garden county, it is close to Glengalough, Avoca and the Wicklow Gap. Since it is situated high on the western side of the beautiful Avonmore Valley, it also offers the tourist majestic views of the River Avonmore, which flows through the Vale of Clara. The topography of this area makes it perfect for hiking.
Rathdrum seems a quiet forgotten town, with 60's climate and nothing going on. But it is a town with wonderfull greenery and foremost warm and welcoming locals. Since Rathdrum was the birthplace of Charles Stewart Parnell, one of the greatest political leaders of modern Irish history visitors are introduced to Avondale House and Forest, which is excellent for both history lovers and family gatherings (great for picnics). In the town there is also the Parnell National Memorial Park.
So... If you have some free time while in Wicklow visit Rathdrum!
Rathdrum is accessible both by Bus (133) and the rail. I recommend taking the train since it is much faster, more frequent and definately more comfortable. You can also visit Avondale as a part of Wicklow tour.
As we walked out of the Heritage Centre in the middle of Cashel we saw the remains of this building. We loved how the modern main street is just built around it. Amazing for visitors from a country with buildings as young as ours. I loved the fact that all day you were confronted with history.
After walking through MANY stunning graveyards during our trip to Europe and the UK and marvelling at the riches that people spent on themselves and their family (even in death) it was a change whilst in Tipperary town to see this graveyard which was the complete opposite.
It is off the main street but is quite well signposted.
This is a great scenic area & well worth a visit on a good day. Dont let the narrow roads deter you from this trip as the views are great. The road upto the top of Slieve League Cliffs is not as bad as other people have said & once there your camera will not stop clicking. When you leave the cliffs drive onto the Malin Beg peninsular to the end. The road is narrow but very negotiable & the views are well worth the trouble. Take plenty of film.
While driving from Belfast to Derry we encountered this awesome medieval castle. It is located right along the coast in County Antrim, Northern Ireland. Most of the castle is still intact, however, part of the castle did fall off the cliff and into the ocean below. In fact, the castle was abandonded after that because the lady of the manor refused to live there any longer. Several servants and cooks were killed when it collapsed. It costs about 2 pounds to enter the castle grounds and it is open from 10-5 everyday. If you are in this part of Northern Ireland take time to visit this fantastic castle right on the coast of Northern Ireland.
Most tourists to the emerald isle don't venture into Northern Ireland. We took two days to visit Belfast and Derry. On the way to Derry we stopped to see this rope bridge. It was the end of December so the bridge itself was closed but it was still worth a visit. You park and walk quite a bit to get to the bridge but it is worth it. The views are amazing and there are sheep wandering about everywhere. If it is Spring, Summer or Fall you can actually walk across the bridge if you are brave enough. It is not an adventure for those afraid of heights or faint of heart. It is also a great site for picture taking and bird watching. It is located in County Antrim, Northern Ireland and costs about 4 pounds. If you are in that area it is worth a visit.
We didnt get to go inside this castle as it was locked. It also started raining as we got out of our car, so we only had a quick look around from the outside. It was also just outside of Enniskillen, just north of Monea Castle.
As we left Enniskillen, we followed a sign for Monea Castle, not knowing if it would be just a few bits of stone or a big proper castle still standing. Luckily for us, on this occasion there was a castle! You can go inside and have a gander at the ruins. Again, we were the only people there at the time!
We always like taking a route which is scenic. So on our way from Belfast to Enniskillen we decided to drive down the west side of Lough Neagh (the big loch near Belfast). On the map there was a symbol and Ardboe Cross written next to it. So we drove there. What we thought was 1 road turned out to be about 6 tiny winding twisty pot hole covered roads!!! Was a great view from there onto the Loch thoough. It was actually a cemetry, with some remains of buildings and a cross. The headstones were all faced the loch, as if they were looking out onto it. We were the only poeple there. Was peaceful.
Don't settle for the sights everyone else sees from the pull-offs along the Connor Pass!
There are at least two spots where it's worth a hike up a hill for some absurd views. The easiest to find and hike is at the peak of the pass. From the parking area, hike up the hill to the summit of the mountain. It was incredibly windy when I was up there, so use caution.
The other spot I found was a pond tucked into ravine. There is a small car pull off before you reach the summit of the pass (heading south). You will see a cascade running beneath a small stone bridge (and probably some sheep milling about). Follow the cascade up to the secluded spot.
There are many places like this that only those willing to put in the extra effort get to see!
More Regions in Ireland